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YONKERS, NY, Saturday, August 27, 2016 — A year ago, it was Purrfect Bags. Saturday night, it was Newborn Sassy (Jordan Stratton, $3) wreaking havoc for co-owner and harness racing trainer Jo Ann Looney-King in Yonkers Raceway’s Lady Maud Pace. 'Sassy' won this $109,050 edition for 3-year-old fillies, rolling past Apple Bottom Jeans (Jason Bartlett) late in 1:53. Odds-on Newborn Sassy, leaving from post position No. 3, left into an immediate two-hole behind second-choice Apple Bottom Jeans. The fave went to pull pocket, but 'ABJ' was not in a giving mood. She reseated her rival, then put up intervals of :27.4, :56.3 and 1:25.2. Skinny Dipper (Brian Sears) made a move out of third, but backpedaled in a hurry. Apple Bottom Jeans did get some nighttime daylight, opening a couple of lengths entering the final turn. However, Newborn Sassy closed ranks and angled out, wearing down the leader late and winning by a half-length. Hug a Dragoness (George Brennan) photoed Cheyenne Triengel (Scott Zeron) for third, with Time on My Hands (Dan Dube) settling for the smallest envelope. Skinny Dipper faded to last among the happy half-dozen. For 'Sassy,' a Western Ideal miss also co-owned by CC Racing, it was her fourth win in 13 '16 tries. The exacta paid $5.70, with the triple returning $21.60. While King won this race for a second consecutive season, Stratton completed his own 'double," having guided Kryptos to win the Lismore Pace for this same division in late May. "I knew we had a bit of a post disadvantage (against Apple Bottom Jeans), so I took a chance at moving again," Stratton said. "I'm not surprised Jason (Bartlett) wouldn't let me go, so I just had to wait. "She's a very talented filly, and I knew it pained (regular driver) Timmy (Tetrick) not be get to drive her tonight. I'm just fortunate the connections had confidence in me." Saturday's $45,000 Open Handicaps were won by... --Pace, Doctor Butch (Brent Holland, $6.70) in 1:50.4; --Trot, Undercover Strike (Bartlett, $2.50) in 1:54. Special Saturday props, too, to Kevin McDermott, who earned his 1,500th career training victory after Badix Hanover (Tyler Buter, $8.40) 'won the bob' in the $18,000, first-race pace (1:52.3). Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, August 27, 2016 - Pole-sitting and pocketed, 14-1 Wildflower (Dan Dube, $31) picked off a drifting, odds-on Celebrity Eventsy (John Campbell) Saturday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's $118,574 Hudson Trot for harness racing 3-year-old fillies. The 1-4 choice had no visible excuse, waltzing around the oval (:28.2, 58.2; 1:27.3) with minimal first-up pressure from Windowshopper (Ake Svanstedt). The people's preference owned a length-and-a-half lead into the lane, but tired late. Even with high-line urging from her chauffeur, she bore out more than enough to give her pursuer a shot. Wildflower ducked inside and stuck her tongue out a the wire, winning the Kodak moment in 1:56.1. Southwind Hope (Andy Miler), who slipped out in front of a gapper down the backside, offered good late foot to grab third while beaten a half-length. Dream Child (Jason Bartlett) and Windowshopper grabbed the final pay envelopes, while Hillosophical (Scott Zeron) was outrun and Dancing in Thehall (Mack MacDonald) broke. For Wildflower, one of three trained by Svanstedt here (Dancing in Thehall and Windowshopper, all racing separately), the daughter of Muscle Hill is co-owned by her trainer, Douglas Sipple and Mal & Janet Burroughs, it was her third win in seven seasonal starts. The exacta paid $60.50, with the triple returning $119. "It's the first time I've driven her," Dube said. "I looked at the program and saw she doesn't make breaks, and thought she'd be a good horse for this track. "I saw John's filly (Celebrity Eventsy) starting to drift and thought I had a chance. When she made that last lunge, I thought I won it." Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, August 27, 2016 - Hambletonian winner Marion Marauder and harness racing driver Scott Zeron made short work of his small-track debut, winning Saturday night's lone $40,000 elimination for the 62nd Yonkers Trot. "Marion," starting from post position No. 3 in a Yonkers Raceway game of musical chairs (nine to eliminate one), took things in his own hooves early. The 3-10 choice moved past first leader Smalltownthrowdown (Dan Daley), then had few issues (:29.2, :58.4, 1:28.1, 1:56.2). The margin was a length-and-quarter over "Smalltown," with Iron Mine Bucky (George Dennis) a drifting, three-hole third. The real fun came in the back of the bus, when the second-tier Gleaming Memory (Ake Svanstedt) made an ugly break that directly wiped out Lagerfeld (Mark MacDonald), while any number of the trailers also broke, were impeded or were just plain outrun. Steed (Brian Sears) was a best-of-the-rest fourth, with Hititoutofthepark (Corey Callahan), Cuffllink Hanover (Jason Bartlett), Celebrity Express (John Campbell) and Lagerfeld also earning berth into next Saturday's $500,000 final (open draw for second jewel of Trotting Triple Crown is Tuesday morning). For Marion Marauder, a 3-year-old son of Muscle Hill trained by Paula Wellwood, who kept in the family for co-owners Marion Wellwood and Devin Keeling, it was his seventh win in nine seasonal starts. The exacta (two wagering choices) paid $7.80, with the triple returning $22.60. "I couldn't have been more pleased with the way he trotted the half tonight," Zeron said. "I'm confident in his abilities to get the job done in the final." "We just wanted him to get off the gate clean and command a race on a half-mile, Mike Keeling, husband of the winning trainer, said. "I think he showed everybody that he can do that. He steered great and he trotted well." Saturday's card also featured a pair of events for 3-year-old fillies, the $118,574 Hudson Trot and $109,050 Lady Maud Pace (3YO fillies). The report will be through soon. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Friday, August 26, 2016 - Favored Tessa Seelster (George Brennan, $5.60) just held off a stubborn Mach it a Par (Brent Holland) Friday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's $45,000 Filly and Mare harness racing open handicap pace. Put in play from her assigned post position No. 5, 'Tessa' had to wait her turn at the outset. She sat outside while Jonsie Jones (Tyer Buter) stuffed Inittowinafortune (Jon Bongiorno) in behind. Tessa Seelster then found an unimpeded path to the front, though she a paid a zippy :26.3 price for the opening-quarter privilege. After a rated :56.2 intermisision, she saw Mach it a Par, who tried it first-up from seventh. Tessa Seelster found a 1:24 three-quarters, taking a length-and-three-quarter lead into the lane. She lost everyone save for Mach it a Par, who did not go away quietly. Tessa Seelster did close the sale, however, winning by a nostril in 1:51.4. Rock N Roll Xample (Dan Dube) was a crisp, ground-saving third, with Krispy Apple (Jason Bartlett) and Sell a Bit N (Jordan Stratton) settling for the minor awards. For Tessa Seelster, a 4-year-old daughter of Shadow Play co-owned (as Burke Racing) by trainer Ron Burke, Weaver Bruscemi and Jonathan Newman, it was her seventh win in 15 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $100.50, with the triple returning $671.50. Saturday night's card includes a pair of stakes for 3-year-old fillies, the $118,574 Hudson Trot and $109,050 Lady Maud Pace. Hambletonian winner Marion Marauder also hits town, leading the lone, $40,000 elimination for Yonkers Trot No. 62. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Thursday, August 25, 2016 - As if a million dollars in harness racing stakes purses isn't enough, marking Saturday, Sept. 3, on the social calendar just became more meaningful. For Yonkers Trot / Messenger Stakes evening, the Raceway is embellishing the experience with a freebie, as in a green auto commuter travel mug (while supplies last). Beginning at 4 PM that afternoon, all existing or newly-enrolled Empire Club members can visit the promotions booth to receive their spiffy mug (see photo). Also that evening, there's an Empire Terrace buffet, with seatings from 6-10 PM. The cost is $19.95 for Empire Clue members and $24.95 for non-members (plus tax and 15% gratuity). Note that those guests who opened a new Empire City Bets account during August shall receive a free buffet coupon via e-mail. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, August 23, 2016 - Hambletonian winner Marion Marauder goes after the second jewel of harness racing's Trotting Triple Crown, leading nine 3-year-olds in the 62nd Yonkers Trot. With a guaranteed $500,000 final purse, Yonkers Raceway's signature trotting event begins with a game of musical chairs, as in one, $40,000 elimination this Saturday night (Aug. 27). to determine the eight finalists. The final is next Saturday night (Sept. 3). The entrants, alphabetically, are... Celebrity Express, Cufflink Hanover (gelding), Gleaming Memory, Hititoutofthepark (ridgling), Iron Mine Bucky, Lagerfeld, Marion Marauder, Smalltownthrowdown  Steed (gelding). Marion Marauder, a Muscle Hill colt, enters with six wins a second in eight seasonal starts ($854,905). He had won five consecutive starts-included the elimination and $1 million final of the Hambletonian-before a first-up second in last weekend's Colonial at Pocono. Paula Wellwood trains, keeping it in the family for co-owners Marion Wellwood and Devin Keeling. Scott Zeron again does the driving. As a carrot at the end of a Yonkers Trot stick, the winner also gets a Yonkers International Trot invitation for that million-dollar event, set for Saturday afternoon, Oct. 15th. The 61st Messenger Stakes, second leg of the Pacing Triple Crown, also goes for its 500-large guaranteed final. Racing Hill leads eight in a 'one-dash-for-the-cash" event, also set for Saturday, Sept. 3. Racing Hill, the career seven-figure son of Roll with Joe, has been consistent to a fault this season, hitting the board (four wins, five seconds, one third) in 10 tries. He won the $500,000 Hempt Memorial (Pocono), while the victory in the $400,000 Adios (Meadows) was sandwiched around second-placed efforts in the Meadowlands Pace and the Battle of the Brandywine (also at Pocono). Tony Alagna trains the Tom hill homebred, who is making his small-track debut. The Messenger entrants, again alphabetically, are... Another Daily Copy, Don'tcallmefrancis (gelding), Dr. J. Hanover, Fernando Hanover (gelding), Manny, Racing Hill, Stonebridge Beach  Western Fame. This Saturday programs also features a pair of events for 3-year-old fillies, the $118,574 Hudson Trot and $109,050 Lady Maud Pace (3YO fillies) . (this story shall be updated) Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, August 20, 2016 -- Centurion ATM (Steve Smith, $33.80) and Feel the Need A (Eric Goodell, $5.10) were the names above the harness racing marquee Saturday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's $45,000 co-featured Open Handicaps. Centurion ATM surprised in the weekly trotting feature in a first-up and first-home effort. Away fourth from post position No. 3, he saw 9-10 choice Melady's Monet (Tyler Buter) led through intervals of :28, 58 and 1:27.1. Centurion ATM moved in a hurry, disposing of 'Melady' just after the thee-quarters and taking off. He opened three lengths entering the lane, then held a belated Undercover Strike (Jason Bartlett) by a half-length in 1:55.1. Lady's Dude (George Brennan), Allerage Star (Dan Dube) and Melady's Monet rounded out the payees. For fifth choice Centurion ATM, a 4-year-old son of S J's Caviar trained by Ake Svanstedt for co-owners Courant A B and Knuttson Trotting, it was his second win in eight seasonal starts. The exacta paid $223.50, with the triple returning $1,613. It was a much better effort for 'Centurion" than his only other local try, breaking early and often as the odds-on choice in an elim for the 2015 Yonkers Trot. The week's adult pace saw favored Feel the Need A make it 3-for-3 since coming stateside. From post No. 5, he two-moved before the quarter, taking over from Doctor Butch (Brent Holland) and zipping around the pylons (:27.1, :55.3, 1:23.3, life-best 1:50.4). Doctor Butch ducked inside, but missed a half-length. Western Rockstar A (Joe Bongiorno) was third, with Great Vintage (Dan Dube) and P H Supercam (Bartlett) dead-heating for fourth. For Feel the Need A, a 7-year-old Down Under Speed King gelding trained by Chris Oakes for co-owners Susan Oakes and Wier All In, he's now 5-for-14 this season. The exacta paid $17.20, the triple returned $114.50 and the superfectas paid $359.50/$303.50 (Great Vintage fourth/P H Supercam fourth). Not that since no one hit Saturday's Pick 5 wager, Monday evening's (Aug. 22) gimmick begins with a carryover of $3,501.50 (50-cent base wager. races 7 through 11). Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Thursday, August 18, 2016 - New York Sire Stakes continued downstate Thursday night, with Yonkers Raceway hosting the $151,624 Jim Meagher Pace for harness racing 2-year-old colts and geldings. The pair of races honored the memory of the Raceway's long-time corporate controller. The outcomes were eerily similar in both resume in result. The winners graduated from the Excelsior ranks, did their damage from off-the-pace and left town 5-for-5 to begin their careers. The opening ($75,112) event saw favored Serious Major (Scott Zeron, $4.70)-from post position No. 2-moved from third down the backside. He rolled past Chip Walther (Marcus Miller) down the backside, then widened to win by 2¼ lengths in 1:56.2. Willie Joe Hill (Pat Lachance) was perched second-over as the second choice, but never came close. He did hold second, with Americanfirewater (Jim Marohn Jr.) a third-over third. For Serious Major, an Art Major colt making his sire stakes debut, it was his third win for Chris Ryder, who now trains the Emerald Highlands Farm homebred. The exacta paid $9.50, with the triple returning $80. "When they sent him to me, I couldn't guarantee he'd stay unbeaten," Ryder said. "He had proven himself (in the Excelsior), so there was no reason not to try him here. "He's not fast, but he tries." Thursday's second ($76,512) division saw another one from the Excelsior finishing school do good work. Eight-baller Funknwaffles (Joe Bongiorno, $10.80) left for a tuck sixth, then patrolled from third-over. He was actually gapping the outer tier before unleashing a furious wide rally in and out of the final turn. Funknwaffles, fifth turning for home, whipped a pocketed What's Goin' On (Mark MacDonald) by two lengths in 1:55.4. Very Special Agent (Zeron) was third, while 1-2 choice Miso Fast (Matt Kakaley) could not sustain an uncovered bid and was a non-threatening fifth. For Funknwaffles, a son of American Ideal owned by Crawford Farms Racing and trained by John Butenscheon, it was his second NYSS after a trio versus The exacta paid $182, with the triple returning $606. "He was very good," Bongiorno said. "He did it wrapped up." Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, August 16, 2016 - Due to a limited number of entrants for both Yonkers Raceway stakes, neither the Hudson Filly Trot nor the Lady Maud Pace are in need of elimination races this Saturday night. Thus, the races for 3-year-old fillies go as "one-dash-for-the-cash" events, set for Saturday night, Aug. 27. The seven in-to-go's (alphabetically) for $118,574 Hudson are... Celebrity Eventsy, Dancing in TheHall, Dream Child, Hillosophical, Southwind Hope, Wildflower  Windowshopper. The half dozen (alphabetically) lasses for the $109,050 Lady Maud are... Apple Bottom Jeans, Cheyenne Triengel, Hug a Dragoness, Newborn Sassy, Skinny Dipper Time on My Hands. Post positions for both races shall be drawn next Tuesday morning, Aug. 23. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Monday, August 15, 2016 - New York Sire Stakes continued downstate Monday night, with Yonkers Raceway hosting the $145,923 Mike Cohen Trot for harness racing 2-year-old fillies. The trio of races honored the memory of the former Yonkers and NBC Sports publicity director, with family and friends making winner's circle presentations. The third ($48,941) division was the evening's fastest, with Barn Bella (Jeff Gregory, $6.10) wiring her three rivals (two others were scratched). From post position No, 3, she led through intervals of :29.2, :59.4, 1:30.2 and 1:59. The final margin was 3½ lengths, with Hotel Royale (Brian Sears) edging Heel on Wheels (Matt Kakaley) for second. Mighty Surf (catch-driver Scott Zeron), as the 9-10 favorite, was not enamored of her environs in any way, shape or form. Very wide early, she eventually found a pocket before breaking, catching herself and breaking again. For second choice Barn Bella, a daughter of Conway Hall co-owned by (trainer) Steve & Nancy Pratt and Purple Haze Stables, it was her third win in six seasonal starts. The exacta paid $30.40, with triple wagering cancelled. Monday's second ($48,941) event saw odds-on Mamora Bay (Sam Schillaci, $2.80)-last of the quintet (one scratch) turning for home after a behind-the-gate bobble-storm by to win going away. From post No. 5, she defeated Run for Royalty (John Campbell) by a length-and-a-quarter in a life-best 1:59.3, with pace-setting (:30.1, 1:00,. 1:29.3) Flyhawk Charm (Jason Bartlett) settling for third. For Mamora Bay, a Chapter Seven miss trained by her driver for owner Peter Barbato, she's now 3-for-5 (with a second and a third) this season. The exacta paid $18.40, with triple wagering again scrapped. The evening's first ($48,091) sire stakes get-together had the three wagering choices all misbehave and the pair of double-digit propositions mind their manners. Nightflix Hanover (Ray Schnittker, $29), inheriting a gift pocket from post No. 4, pulled against Reverend Nanny (Jordan Stratton) by the half, then widened. The final margin was 13¼ lengths in 2:03.3. Cherry Royal Ruby (Dan Daley), the 9-10 choice, recovered to beat the other two jumpers and finish third. For fourth choice 'Nightflix', a Credit Winner miss co-owned (with Charlie Iannazzo, Ted Gewertz and Tom Spatorico) by her driver/trainer, it was a maiden-breaking win in her fifth start. The exacta paid $115.50, with triple wagering not offered due to only five scheduled/actual starters. Statebreds are back at it at Thursday night, with the $151,624 Jim Meagher Pace (2-year-old colts/geldings). Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, August 13, 2016 - Sometimes, harness racing handicapping isn't about trying to reinvent the wheel.  With that fun factoid in mind, the last time Allerage Star was in an Open Handicap Trot, she won. The last time The Real One was in an Open Handicap Pace, he won. Encore, encore. Both repeated Saturday night, coming away with Yonkers co-features. Allerage Star (Andy Miller, $13.80), from post position No. 6 after a week off, was given deft, two-move marching orders. She worked around first leader Lady's Dude (George Brennan) just after a :28.2 opening quarter-mile. The lass found a :57.3 intermission before E R Ellie (Jordan Stratton) made her second move, first-up from third. Melady's Monet (Tyler Buter), tucking fourth as the just-over-even-money favorite, worked from second-over. Allerage Star found a 1:26 three-quarters, taking a length-and-three-quarter lead into the lane. That was enough to hold off a charging 'Melady,' who missed a half-length in 1:54...track rerecord for her weight class. Lady's Dude was a pocket third, with E R Ellie and Madman Hall (Ray Schnittker) rounding out the payees. For fourth choice Allerage Star, a 4-year-old daughter of Angus Hall trained by Julie Miller for co-owners Little E, Jason Settlemoir, Arthur Geiger and David Stolz, it was her eighth win in 19 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $37.80, with the triple returning $101. The week's marquee pace saw The Real One (Pat Lachance, $15), last week's champ, save every inch of this week's ground. From post No. 5, he was an unhurried sixth as Sapphire City (Mark MacDonald), then Melmerby Beach (Dan Dube) led through intervals of :27, :55.4 and 1:23.2. 'Melmerby' had a length lead in and out of the final turn. P H Supercam (Jason Bartlett), who had found a seat third, went after Melmerby Beach in earnest, collaring him mid-stretch. He was good, but The Real One was better. Slipping through deep in the passing lane, he lassoed 'Supercam', drawing out to win by a length in a season's-best-marching 1:51. Sapphire City, 1-2 choice Bit of a Legend N (Stratton) and Melmerby Beach came away with the minors. For second choice The Real One, a 6-year-old Mach Three gelding trained by his driver for owner Helene Filion, he's now 5-for-18 this season. The exacta paid $61.50, the triple returned $676 and the superfecta paid $1,440. Not that since no one hit Saturday's Pick 5 Monday evening's (July 18) Pick 5 wager begins with a carryover of $3,020.94 (50-cent base wager. races 7 through 11). New York Sire Stakes continue Monday night, with the $145,923 Mike Cohen Trot (2-year-old fillies). Thursday night, it's the $151,624 Jim Meagher Pace (2-year-old colts/geldings). Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Friday, August 12, 2016 - Yonkers Raceway Friday night hosted New York Sire Stakes, the $150,224 Milt Taylor Trot for harness racing 2-year-old colts and geldings. Two divisions at $75,112 each comprised the 'sloppy' event over a surface that took in a fair amount of pre-card water (start of the harness racing card delayed 20 minutes). The moisture didn't compromise the favorites, as Devious Man (Brian Sears, $2.20, part of entry) and Such an Angel (John Campbell, $2.70) both brought home the mail. Devious Man, leaving from post position No. 6 and operating from second-over, whipped a pocketed Neon Lights (Jason Bartlett) by three-quarters of a length in 1:59. Royal Casanova (Campbell) led to the lane (:29.4, 1:00, 1:29.3) before fading to third, beaten 3¾ lengths. Big Man Ev (Andy Miller), partnered with the winner at the windows, broke early and wound up beaten fifth, beaten just a pair of subsequent misbehavers. For Devious Man, a Credit Winner colt co-owned (as part of Stroy Inc.) and trained by Julie Miller, it was his second win in six seasonal starts. The exacta paid $20.20, with the triple returning $42.60. "You can drive him same was as a rental car," Ms. Miller said. "He just has a lot of spunk and energy." The second sire stakes soiree saw pole-sitting Such an Angel line up his six rivals, then complete his appointed rounds (:29.4, 1:01, 1:30.3, 1:59.1). He widened in the lane to defeat an off-cover Money Macintosh (Andy Miller) by 2¾ lengths, while a first-up Stick with Me Kid (Sears) held third. For Such an Angel, a son of Credit Winner trained by Paul Kelley for co-owners Sam Caruso Jr. and Purple Haze Stables, he's now 4-for-5 this season (3-for-3 with Campbell driving. The exacta paid $11.20, with the triple returning $35.80. "He a really professional colt," Campbell said. "Done everything I've asked so far." Friday night's $45,000 Filly and Mare Open Handicap Pace was won by a from-last Mach it a Par (Sears, $35.60) in 1:52.4 Sire stakes continue Monday night, with the $145,923 Mike Cohen Trot (2-year-old fillies). Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Thursday, August 11, 2016 - Yonkers Raceway Thursday night hosted the $164,874 New York Sire Stakes Bruce Hamilton Pace for harness racing 3-year-old fillies. Two, $82,437 divisions made up the event, which once again honored the memory of a certified mover and shaker (as well as a fairly decent soul) in the state's racing and breeding program. The opening Hamilton group saw Soft Idea (Scott Zeron, $15.40), from post position No. 4, work out a perfect, second-over trip. She was able to get the lane jump on pocketeer Milky Way Rae (Jim Morrill Jr.), whipping that one by a neck in 1:54.3. Encore Deo (George Brennan) was third. Time on My Hands (Jason Bartlett), as the 4-5 favorite, led the lasses (:27.4, :57.2, 1:26), but caved badly through the stretch and finished last-beaten 10¼ lengths-among the seven. For third choice Soft Idea, an American Ideal filly trained by Linda Toscano for co-owning stables South Mountain, Bay's, Radio Racing and Little E, it was her third win in eight seasonal starts. The exacta paid $85, with the triple returning $283. "The trip worked out great and she seems to race better from off the pace," Zeron said. The second sire stakes soiree saw pole-sitting, odds-on Dime a Dance (Matt Kakaley, $3, part of entry) take over from fresh Lasix Wishy Washy Girl (Morrill Jr.), then complete her civic duties (:27.4; :57.3, 1:25.4, 1:53.3). Dime a Dance defeated 27-1 shot WWG by a length, with No Clouds Bluechip (Zeron) a first-up third. For Dime a Dance, a Roll with Joe filly trained by Ron Burke for co-owners Our Horse Cents and J&T Silva Stables and Blue Chip Bloodstock, she's now 4-for-9 this season. The exacta paid $38.20, with the triple returning $96. "She's much better now," Kakaley said. "Early in the season, she was flat, but she's finishing better the past few starts." Sire stakes continue Friday night, with the $150,224 Milt Taylor Trot (2-year-old colts/geldings). Two divisions (races 6 and 7) at $75,112 each comprise the event. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Tuesday, August 9, 2016 -- It's a downstate New York Sire Stakes two-fer this week, with Yonkers Raceway hosting Thursday night's $164,874 Bruce Hamilton Pace (harness racing 3-year-old fillies) and Friday evening's $150,224 Milt Taylor Trot (2-year-old colts/geldings). Since we're nothing if not chivalrous, the ladies lead the way with a pair of $82,437 events (races 6 and 7). The opening division finds Angels Rockn Pink (Mark MacDonald, post 7) enjoying a solid season but obviously getting no help from the draw. The daughter of Rock N Roll Heaven, owned by Crawford Farms and trained Chris Oakes, by has hit the board in eight of her nine seasonal starts. Time on My Hands (Jason Bartlett, post 2) has won half of her of eight seasonal starts, including a sire stakes event here earlier this summer. That same fun factoid can also be said of Soft Idea (Scott Zeron, post 4), who goes after a third '16 win. The second Hamilton group includes American Ivy (Brian Sears, post 5), who gets a fresh set of hands here. The American Ideal miss has been consistent enough to go 2-for-9 in each of her racing seasons. Friday night froshfest--two divisions (races 6 and 7) at $75,112 each--includes some lads who've begun compiling quite the resume. The opening event finds a potent Julie Miller-trained entry in Big Man Ev (Andy Miller, post 5) and Jealous Man (Sears, post 6). The former, a Chapter Seven colt, has a pair of NYSS wins (Buffalo, Saratoga), while the latter, a son of Credit Winner, was a small player in open stakes company who also owns a Buffalo sire stakes win. Friday's second statebred social is led by Such an Angel (MacDonald, post 1), with three (NYSS) wins in four tries. Barn Winner (Jeff Gregory, post 2) is 2-for-4 to begin his career, sire stakes wins at Buffalo and Monti. Note that since no one took down Tuesday afternoon's Pick 5, Thursday night's gimmick begins with a carryover of $2,133.42 (50-cent base wager, races 7 through 11). Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Saturday, August 6, 2016 -- Undercover Strike (Jason Bartlett, $9.40) and The Real One (Pat Lachance, $14.20) did their mischief from off-the-pace Saturday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's pair of $45,000 harness racing co-features. Undercover Strike, starting behind the eight-ball in the Open Handicap Trot, was able to get away fifth. Lady's Dude (George Brennan), as the 6-5 choice, wasn't going all that much (:28, :57.4) before E R Ellie (Jordan Stratton) moved from fourth down the backside. In fact, 'Ellie' pulled a tad late, forcing Undercover Strike to go wide toward the 1:26.3 three-quarters. Lady's Dude, meanwhile, wasn't helped by the cheapo fractions, caving off the final turn. First, E R Ellie went by, then Undercover Strike went by, the latter whipping the former by three-quarters of a length in 1:55.1. Red Hot Herbie (Dan Dube), Money Maven (Tyler Buter) and Tober (Brent Holland) rounded out the payees, while Lady's Dude faded to sixth. For second choice Undercover Strike, an 8-year-old Striking Sahbra gelding owned by Gerard Stuchbury and trained by Tom Milici, it was his 10th win in 16 seasonal starts. The exacta paid $40.40, with the triple returning $143.50. The week's featured pace, blindly drawn, saw The Real One, from post No. 4, work from second-over. Pole-sitting Mach it So (Bartlett), the 9-10 fave, quarter-moved to lead after a :27.2 opening subsection. The people's preference found a :56.2 intermission before Artistic Major (Holland) was out from fourth. That gave The Real One the necessary hitchhike in and out of the 1:24.1 three-quarters. Mach it So had a length-and-half in and out of the final turn, but he was done. The Real One closed widest and fastest, defeating a pocketed Luck Be Withyou (Eric Goodell) by a neck in 1:51.3. Artistic Major held third, with Cooperstown (Dube) and Mach it So settling for the small change. For fourth choice The Real One, a 6-year-old Mach Three gelding trained by his driver for owner Helene Filion, he's now 4-for-17 this season. The exacta paid $68, with the triple returning $245.50. Frank Drucker

YONKERS, NY, Friday, August 5, 2016 - Krsipy Apple (Jason Bartlett, $18.40) usually gets handicapped with an outside venue. So, what happened with a blind harness racing draw? She was 'handicapped' with an outside venue. No matter as the millionairess took it the distance Friday night, winning Yonkers Raceway's $45,000 Filly and Mare Open Pace. In play from post position No. 7 (in one notch after a defection), she worked around Medusa (catch-driver George Brennan), then never had an anxious moment (:27.3, :56.2, 1:24, 1:51.3). She easily handled a three-hole-sitting Regil Elektra (Mark MacDonald) by a half-length, with Medusa clearly third. The Kiwis Sell a Bit N (Jordan Stratton) and Sheeza Shark N (Brent Holland) settled for the minors. Mach it a Par (Brian Sears), the 4-5 favorite, never was close to reaching and finished sixth. For Krispy Apple, an 8-year-old daughter of Western Ideal co-owned by Bamond Racing & Joseph Davino and trained by Jeffrey Bamond Jr., it was the fourth choice's fifth win in 12 seasonal starts (career 45-for-131). The exacta paid $113, the triple returned $545 and the superfecta paid $1,461. Special Friday props to Anderlecht, the hard-knocking, 11-year-old gelding who finished second in his 250th career start. Going for a 50th win, he just about survived a first-up bid, missing a neck in the opener for bottom level ($12,500) claiming pacers. Frank Drucker

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